Thursday, November 26, 2009

The Tune Up - This Saturday at Ginger Minx, free with me


In time honoured tradition a tad tardy with this one, bit of date confusion (it's the new black) at my end, meant that I didn't get the chance to hoot this out on the radio as I should have done last night. Starting this Saturday, and running for the next four weeks until they close for Christmas, is a brand new'un The Tune Up. In laymans terms that means I'll be fiddling with files in order to make a joyful noise and righteous racket from 5-8pm at the Ginger Minx, and it's no cover bruvva/free as a bird.
I've done this slot once before and even through a slightly enjoyable jetlagged haze it struck me as a nice and decent time to be playing some quality music of a mixed up and most edifying nature. I've steered clear of anything like a residency for the last five years, but the vibes and enthusiasm of the bar, the fact that it's close enough to home to feel like playing at the local, and the curious timeslot which allows for some musical meanderation (in the nation, on the station, keep on adding to this list to you own degradation etc etc) all appeal.
So Aucklandites it would be simply splendid and most copacetic if any of you fancied a tip top tune or two (in fact I pledge many more than that), a beverage etc in a decent spot with easy-access smoking and all the trimmings. Following my stereophonic spanneration Andy Beck will be bring his Mixed Crate of liquid d'n'b, and for thems that don't know The Ginger Minx is part of The Dominion, corner of Dominion Road and Valley Rd, as such it's a hood hop for all Mount Edeneers, Kinkslanderators, Sandringhamalamadingdongs and Newtonbombs..etc etc, OK I'll stop now, a monstrous ta to Cherry Sprinkles for whipping up the flyer on the ..erm fly.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Stinky Grooves 24.11.09 and Taperating Tornadoes


Blue - King Midas Sound (Hyperdub)
Wizards In Dub Pt 2 - Invasion vs Shackleton (This Is Less Music)
People Riddim - Nick Manasseh (Roots Garden)
C20 Riddim - Tapes (Jahtari)
Nuh Fraid Of Them - Busy Signal
Question - Busy Signal (Stainless)
Duffle Bag Riddim - DJ Karim (Stainless)
Done Wid War (09 Rmx) - Busy Signal
Lactic & Coil - Cutty Ranks Brain Storm (Skicron)
Roll Out - Red Fox (Skicron)
Nuh Fit Mi - Christopher Martin (Skicron)
Picantie - Busy Signal
Belly Off - Peter Pozorek
Rede (Doma Tornadoes Rmx) - Daniel Jeffs (Pueblo Nuevo)
Incredulous (Frank Booker Edit) - Julien Dyne (BBE)
Black Glory - Scalper (Like Water)
Burn - Thavius Beck (Big Dada)
Mixing Up The Medicine - Juelz Sanatana ft Yelawolf
Do Over - Ghostface Killer ft Raheem "Radio' (Def Jam)
Stay Off The Fucking Flowers - Blakroc ft Raekwon (V2)
Arab Trip For Cumbia Allah - Gianko y Su Sonido La Limpia
2Pac vs SG Colombia - Black Mandingo
Cumbia Bichera (Tremor Rmx) - El Remolon (Pueblo Nuevo)
Viajante - Tremor (ZZK)
Baile (Doma Tornadoes Remix) - Ricardo Villalobos
Soundclash 1 (Grevious Angel Rmx) - Naptha (Blackdown)
The loot (Sully Rmx) - J-Treole (Keysound)
Reminder - Sully (Frisjo Beats)
Chakra - Guido (Punch Drunk)
Roadz - Hostile
Waiting For You - King Midas Sound (Hyperdub)
Bluez - Peverelist (Punch Drunk)
You Monopolize Me -The Ogyatanaa Show Band (Soundways)
Them Go Talk Of You - The Cutlass Dance Band (Soundway)
Carmen - The Silvertones (Soundway)
Mulatu - Mulatu Astatke (Strut)
The Plague Village - I Monster/Skywatchers (Platipus)
JB Dubs - John Baker (Trunk)
Stay On Grey - Bernard Fevre (Lo)
Mirrors - Dam Funk (Stones Throw)
Hands Of Love (Fingers Of Sand) - Rocha (International Feel)
Naomi - John Talabot (Permanent Vacation)
Bitter Wind - Rene Hall (Essential)
Shipbuilding - Orchestre National De Jazz (Bee Jazz)
Multiplication - Jonny Trunk (Trunk)
Assault On Precinct 13 - John Carpenter (Record Makers)
Sandobu - Bernard Fevre (Lo)
Umbral feat Tremolo Audio - Tremor (ZZK)

'Don't make plans' is arguably some of the best advice you can ever be given, if only I could follow it. I made plans for a bit of a birthdaystravaganza with StinkInc turning one, just as the noughties have almost done their dash... and my rashly promised plans have been dashed. The Mulatu round two interview languishes on my hard drive, untranscribed and forlorn - hopefully this weekend. 100 to 90 of the years renkingest tunes have been mustered and semi-prepped and prodded, and I was hoping to have that to post today. But alas, I am full of shit. This was compounded by the realisation that I had got the date wrong for the 1st post as I had checked when I re-edited it, not posted it. I believe in the current parlance this is a FAIL.

I got excuses, plenty, ranging from the generally worthy to vague mumbles about how Friday night's excellent, opulent Curious Films party and an impossibly timed semi-convincing drubbing of the visionless Twickenhamites the following night mashed my weekend and senses up proper.. but you don't need to hear it. Instead ..something you should here.

It's always a rare delight when two local (or local once removed), tracks rub up against one another, solely on merit not any enforced NZ Muzak Weak palaver. Tonight it was Julien Dyne, whose Pins & Digits album has been picked up by BBE which has already resulted in an EP with a cracking edit and a sturdy instrumental. Points, prizes, props and pats on the back to him. Next was Scalper, a feller who made a big impression on me when he first came over as a relative newbie with long time muckers Fun-Da-Mental many years ago. These days he's a scalping out on the West Coast, and his album 'Flesh & Bones' which is due next year is some proper potent business you'll be hearing more of round these parts. The track I played tonight 'Black Glory' is available from iTunes (follow the link for some Scalperation) etc along with another ripper that I haven't got around to running yet 'Zero'.


Hanyways like a shaggy dog story I'm not chucking either of them up, instead it's another local (almost.... well he used to be). Jackson Bailey has been gently blowing up with his digital explorations and it's great to see his Tapes 12" finally oot and aboot through the genial gentlefolk of Jahatari. I got a sneak on a few of these cuts when I caught up with him in London and they have a unique charm that unravels with with cumulative replays.
Check the EP out because it's a wee gem, replete with tape hiss and enough attitude and humour to lift it well above the 8-bit-stepper standard. Here's a low qual entree but please do slip yer shopping shoes on and get in touch with a copy, those Jahtari folk are awful generous with the free tunage so patronise for eternal karmic reward.
Check the other link to a scorching track from tonight below, for them with a further inclination for some tune satiation.....
Buy the 12" direct from Jahtari here also supreme quality files at Boomkat who are positively raving about the release, bless em....



Had a ramble about the excellent net label Pueblo Nuevo here a couple of weeks back and don't you know it they're at it again. This time they've hauled in the fast ascending Doma Tornadoes to remix Daniel Jeffs 'Rede' and he's done a potently percussive job unclenching the electronics. Check it here at Pueblo Nuevo or alternatively hit Doma Tornadoes bandcamp where it's legit and free, as well as his (I think unauthorised) remix of Ricardo Villalobos's excellent 'Baile'.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Stinky Grooves 17.11.09 avec I Monster.. no, I really do


Record Shop - Pablo (Soma)
Ene Alantchie Alantchie Ainoren - Mulatu Astatke (Strut)
Asiyo Belema feat Frank Holder - Mulatu Astatke (Strut)
Uptight - The Silvertones (Soundway)
Bilongo - Papi Brandao Y Sus Ejectuyivos (Soundway)
Cumbia De Colombia - Pedro Jairo Garces y Su Guitar (Discos Fuentes)
You Never Knew - Busy Signal (Jukeboxx)
Unfair - Peetah Morgan ft Busy Signal (No Doubt)
Who Dat - Richie Spice (No Doubt)
Welcome - Nitty Kutchie (No Doubt)
Lucky Man - Courtney John (Peckings)
You're Gonna Need Me - Jovi Rockwell (Psycho Therapy Mixtape)
Rizzla - Jovi Rockwell (Psycho Therapy Mixtape)
Run Red - Flow Dan ft Brazen (Eskibeat)
Guest House - Ghostface Killah feat Fabolous (Def Jam)
Mixing Up The Medicine - Juelz Santana
4th Time Around (Messengers Rmx) - J.Period & K'naan
Tapando El Sol Con Un Dedo - Chico Sonido (Kin Kon)
Bluez - Peverlist (Punch Drunk)
Reminder - Sully (Frijso Beats)
The Loot (Sully Rmx) - J-treole (Blackdown)
Stop What You're Doing - Untold (Hemlock)
Never Went Away - Untold (Hemlock)
The Plague Village - I Monster/Skywatchers (Platipus)
Sunflower (Eero Johannes Rmx) - Reason Or Romanza (Black Acre)
Au Printemps -John Baker (Trunk)
Stay On Grey - Bernard Fevre(Lo Recordings)
Boomeran - Rune Lindbaek presents Kanakas (Lunaflicks)
The Outer Skin - Sean Donnelley
Make Me Stronger (Instrumental) - Bei Bei & Shawn Lee (Ubiquity)
The Grinder - The Slew (Ninja Tune)
JB Dubs - John Baker (Trunk)
Hands Of Love (Harveys Downstairs Mix)- Rocha (International Feel)
Crosby - Rune Lindbaek presents Kanakas (Lunaflicks)
Bootie Beat - Shawn Lee And Clutchy Hopkins (Ubiquity)
People Rhythm - Manasseh (Roots Garden)
Gold Love Rhythm - Tapes (Jahtari)
IMF - Terry Lynn (Phree Music)
Magadishu Night Life - Ghosts On Tape (Wireblock)
O Dela - Kidid
El Guacho - El Remolon (Pueblo Nuevo)
Cumbia Frikera - Frikstailers (Soot)
La Cumbia Del Moonra - Moonrra y su Batallon (Crammed)
Detroit Falls - Pariah (R&S)
Speed Check - Pablo (Soma)
East - Bei Bei & Shawn Lee (Ubiquity)
Speed Check - Pablo (Soma)
Stress On Pluton - Bernard Fevre (Lo Recordings)

A tad fatigued right nowest and a shade under the weather so please excuse the relative brevity, scanty info and whatnot. The good news is, Part 2 of the Mulatu interview went down this morning and when I have the audio and time to transcribe it, here is where it shall be. I've got mass writing and plenty other kerffuffle up the ying yang right now, so I'm aiming for around next Tuesday, however that could mean February 2010 (and how futuristic does twentyten sound? very in my book).
Presented for your limited-time delectation at a modest 192 krillobites-per-nostril is a slice of newness from I Monster/Skywatchers on Platipus (not the trance label I'm sure, by the way is there anything less genuinely psychedelic than psi-trance?)
Is it something they put in the water in Sheffield? Is it something they don't put in the water?... Who knows, but it truly does box above its weight musically. Have loved bits and pieces of I Monster malarkey for an awful long time, alongside their interlinked bread run All Seeing I and other related rascals from the city of Seven Hills and very little bullshit. So when I clapped my peepers on the 'Art Of Chill' EP (which sounds like something Kirk and I would have played on Tranquillity Bass in 1996) while pounding my web-wallet into oblivion at Juno Downloads last night, well I had to have it. In the course of writing this and sorting links etc I've discovered these are all taken from a rather exquisite looking comp of the same name, wish I'd have sussed that 24 hours ago!
To business... there's a proper shaggy haired mellow psych vocal number ('Soul Baptist'), an Air-esque (in a thoroughly good, drawing from similar stinkfluences, kind of way), a vocodourised Flaming Stainless Lips kind of deal ('A New Robot'), a scary and possibly brilliant Speak'n'Spell cover of Tina Turner's cringe-inducing 'The Best' (all bets are off on that one) and this gem.
Skywatchers album early 2010 they say, watch the ..... err skies.

Buy the four hi-quality files of delight, the full comp is here
Find out more, or just get more confused at I Monster web portalizer


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Mulatu Astatke Interview - Exclusively for StinkInc


“Lets talk fast because it can disconnect with these phones.”
The first words from Mulatu Astatke, the 66 year old don of Ethiojazz, prove to be sadly prophetic. Perhaps a bit of prophecy is appropriate for a man who is talking, on some very iffy phone lines, from the cradle of civilization, Ethiopia. The last few years have seen a massive jump in greater public awareness of Mulatu’s music with Jim Jarmusch’s extensive use in the ‘Broken Flowers’ OST, readily available vinyl and the continued celebration of his 'Volume 4' of the Ethiopiques CD series getting long overdue credit and sales. However 2009 has been a veritable bonanza for Astatke - a show with Malcolm Catto’s frequently stunning outfit The Heliocentrics last year evolved into a 10 day recording session that yielded the ‘Inspiration Information’ album, and Strut finally managed to do what Soundway had attempted a couple of years ago, and released a quality retrospective - ‘New York- London- Addis The Story Of Ethiojazz 1965-75’ (though Soundway gaffer Miles Cleret did write the sleevnotes).

My first encounter with Mulatu was on a tape from 80's (possibly emanating from the Small Town Thunderers/Jackdaw With Crowbar axis) though at the time I didn’t know who it was because it was simply called ‘Ethiopian track’, or something similarly generic. It was a solitary clue that there was something different there to all the African music I had heard. That was followed by a few, probably slurred, enquiries on late night taxi rides over the years and locales with Ethiopian drivers about what on earth they were playing, leaving hazy memories of some great tunes but not many names the next morning, that problem remains.

The next proper connection was made when I guested on the Hotpot Radio show with my pal, the venerable Trevor Whatevea, and his co-pilot Mnsr Scruff in Manchester in 2003. Scruff had the Worthy Records, 'Mulatu Of Ethiopia' album (surprise, surprise…he has just about everything) and played a track, on one of the several shows they were recording that day. My interest was severely piqued, thinking this sounds like that track I used to have on tape, and sure enough there was ‘Netsanet’, the very song that had hooked and absorbed me a decade or two previous.
That day looked a bit like this.
A fruitless and frustrating search for the vinyl in the record shops of Manchester, Birmingham and London followed, before I discovered it in the unlikeliest of locales on my way back to NZ at the house mecca, Dancetracks in the glorious old L.E.S. of Manhattan. I'm pretty sure it's the re-issue, but even they were scarce on the ground then. One of only a fistful of doof-free discs in that entire legendary shop, I was made up, and naturally it lit a fire underneath my proverbial record searching ass - for Mulatu and more music and knowledge about Ethiopia, which continues to this day.

I had tried to make contact for an interview with Mulatu a few years ago, and put my hand up when the Heliocentrics album dropped (even though I was initially a tad disappointed by that one, possibly down to unreachable expectations of that pairing) but this time the circuits connected, and a time and date was set. I’ve been on the interviewing game for some time now, and like DJing, it takes something fairly monumental to get me clammy handed. Talking to Mulatu ranked up there.
With a monstrous delay, and sufficient crackle to make the next Burial album, as an obstacle to free conversation, plus enough failed connections to require a bionic dialing finger, the Ethiopian telephone service did its' level best to not let this happen. We both persevered and got very frustrated by that along the way, but there was actually a lot more salvageable dialogue than I first thought. Below is the un-edited conversation, his words are exactly as he said 'em, and I understood 'em, only minus a couple of bits that were impossible to decipher above the tele-noise. There may well be a part 2 to this, and soon, but for the meantime read on.

I began by thanking him for his music, like the groveling fanboy I truly am.
“You get the last one, the compilation records?”

Indeed I have and I think it may be the one to introduce a lot more people to your music
“I think so too, I’m very happy. Which music are you thanking me for

Well all of it really, though I can’t go beyond the Golden Era classic Ethiojazz stuff, like the the Budha comp and L’Arome Productions vinyl albums, and of course the re-issued Worthy album. (I think I may have struck a nerve here by not simply bigging up the recent releases, not an ideal start, he sounded kind of understandably potentially grumpy at this point)
“Well I don’t follow that very much seriously. I have only recordings on the Ethiopiques, number 4, that’s my collection but the rest I don’t know very much about that. Budha records are producing those music, and I don’t follow the other ones”

Righto. Having lived through the Emperor Selassie’s reign and a brace of successive dictatorships with martial law and all the rest, I wonder how much of a presence his music currently has in Ethiopia media?
“I’m a prominent composer, arranger and I had radio programmes I also had before, a television programme, I wrote for a play, I’m in different... you know bands, I release CDs and I travel.”


Why is Ethiojazz, and in fact most Ethio music, so different to other African forms, is it just the isolation?
Well now with Ethiojazz it has been 40 years I have been creating it you know. Why its different, why we are different to most is we have one mode which is called Anche Hoye, which is not found in any other part of the world at all. And also we use five tones to compose our music, five tone scales. What I did was I use also twelve tone music, so this is five tone against twelve, that’s how Ethiojazz is. The area I’m talking about is when you have three or four cultures, trying to put them together you really have to be very careful that one doesn’t dominate another one, and you must have a feel. My feel is Ethiopian mode, Ethiopian scales. So what I did was, I combined with twelve tone but I have to collect my own progressions, I sort of like have to create my own voicings, so that it doesn’t really disappear the Ethiopian modes at all. So you know it’s been very interesting but hard work, but now it's very big in the world.”

How was working with the Heliocentrics, obviously you have been working with Either/Orchestra in Boston for some time, was this a considerably different bag?
“Well you know it’s just what I've been doing, that’s actually just Ethiojazz music, what we’ve been doing now together but its only the orchestration is a bit different. We use more electronic now, I use a lot of acoustic before, but it sounded really nice. I think it’s a beautiful combination, and actually when am I doing the arrangement for different bands I do it different ways. When I do the Heliocentrics now we are really very much together. I write so it could suit the Heliocentrics.”

Is your project adapting traditional, pentatonic Ethiopian instruments to play the twelve tone scale ongoing?
“Yes that’s a very interesting project, which I’ve actually got about 70% now, because you know, I’ve been touring, I’ve been doing something else so I just let it go for awhile. We managed to play ‘Mercy Mercy’, ‘Never On A Sunday’, you know ‘Summertime’, those kinds of things, playing with a krar, which is so interesting I tell you. It was on the television and the people loved it and it was really great.”
A krar
You really are changing music by doing this.
“I’m trying my best my friend. And also there is one very interesting thing, actually its going to come out on my new CD (Mulatu Steps Ahead). I'm going to London next week, to complete my new CD you know. You see there is this tribe in the south of Ethiopia we call them Dirashe . This tribe they play a diminished scale, my friend. So they’ve been there for centuries and centuries. What I did was I bought them up to the city, to Addis, and I filled it with jazz and made a beautiful programme on television. So this has been so interesting, its going to come out on my new CD you know, and I’ve been doing that, and also I have done an opera. Very interesting opera , written when I was at Harvard. Its about the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, the whole story is about a conducting stick. We used to conduct music in 380AD, it's centuries ago, when there was no symphony orchestra in the world. So the whole idea is Ethiopian contribution to the development of the whole of music. So I used this stick, I took about forty or fifty minutes from the part where we used the conducting stick, with violins and cellos and everything, and the choirs as well, and that has been conducted with that stick which makes it so interesting. So I’m trying to finish my opera as well now.”

There was more here, but the Ethio telco was doing me no favours, I understand there is also an electronic component to the opera, and he has already presented a portion of it at Harvard. I did know enough to offer another slightly informed question when we had stopped yelling ‘Hellooooo’ at each other (I think I may have some Ethiopian cussing on tape, there was certainly a bit of blue from yours truly, as I ran through the best part of ten calls getting connected, and then having one side go down immediately… somewhat frustrating)
Is this the Yared Opera that you plan to perform in the Lalibela churches (said with some very hesitant, but apparently correct pronounciation, just don’t start me on some on the names of some of those singers!)
“Yeeeeesss, exactly, that’s what I’m really working to put it on at a Lalibela church. You know about them?”
(As seen above the churches in the sacred city of Lalibela are literally hewn from the rock, rather than rock being broken down for construction, the rock is removed to reveal the structure. This is some architecturally awesome, devotional digging and stonemasonry on a stupefying level.)
A little, with buildings made entirely of stone the acoustics would be unlike anywhere else it would be incredible?
“I know, I know it will be something beautiful because the architects work on that is so interesting, and if we also show the mekwamia there – what you call this, the conducting mekwemia, that’s really an Ethiopian contribution to the world. The architects of the conducting.”

Saint Yared's foot stabbing incident (hit the Yared link below for the scoop on that!)
I’m not entirely sure whether he means, the architects of the incredible churches in the sacred city of Lalibela, or as the architects as in modern music (in particular Saint Yared, who is believed to have been the first to write musical notes, centuries ahead of Western civilisation, and a great deal more. Don't start me on the rasta/reggae links here, I'm stopping myself from rambling on about everything from Bob's 'Three Little Birds' to Prince Fari's chants), as he references at the end. Never mind, he’s on a roll.
"Especially the Dirashe is so interesting. When we studied jazz at Berkeley, they were telling us how Charlie Parker created the diminished key to create modern jazz, and the great composers Debussy, Bach and all this, been using a diminished scale for composing you know. So what is really very interesting is this tribe have been there for centuries and centuries, so what I wanted to know is, is it Charlie Parker? or is it these tribes, or who? what? Creating the diminished scale, so that is one thing I am working on in the future, answering that.”
And then the line went dead, time was well past done, boohoo sob sob.

You can buy the new Strut compilation and much more Mulatu from Conch

I hope I haven't taken liberties in writing this up, the line was wack and the connection was weak, the delay was insufferable.. transcribing was no barrel of laughs. The name of the tribe he refers to, and the YouTube clips are of, is an informed guess, as I cannot find a direct reference to them and their diminished chords online. I'm no expert on this stuff but I have learnt a little about Ethiopia over time, researching for the interview and this post has increased that and led me down some interesting web wormholes (it's also prepped me for round 2). Hope you enjoy it, and buy that crucial compile etc.
Big thanks to Marty @ Border.


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Stinky Grooves 10.11.09 and rollin with all the Rrrrrrrrs


Big Big Pollution - Barry Brown (Kingston Sounds)
Unfair - Peetah Morgan & Busy Signal (No Doubt)
Garrison - Alborosie ft The Tamlins (No Doubt)
Welcome - Nitty Kutchie (No Doubt)
Who Dat - Richie Spice (No Doubt)
Ghetto Riddim - Kemar McGregor (No Doubt)
Vurderas - Flow Dan ft Killa P (Eskibeat)
Rise The Larma - Flow Dan ft Badness (Eskibeat)
Just Being Me - Skream (Southside All Stars)
Coalition - Tricky/South Rakkas Crew (Domino)
Air & Lack Thereof - James Blake (Hemlock)
Sunflower (Eero Johannes Rmx) - Reason Or Romanza (Civil Music)
Hardcore - Thavius Beck (Big Dada)
Iodine Poison - Freddie Gibbs
And The Beat Goes On - Thavius Beck (Big Dada)
Black Glory - Scalper
Grown Simba - J Cole
Fogged Spacesuit - The Clonious (Ubiquity)
Turn Me Ill (Marcwithasee Remix) - Micachu (Rough Trade)
My New Flumes (Instr) - James Duncan (Round Trip Mars)
Simple Headphone Mind - Stereolab & Nurse With Wound (United Dairies)
Blackwell - Beak> (Invada)
Heavy - Jonny Trunk (Trunk)
Decompression Introduction - Kelpe (DC Recordings)
7 Inch - Shawn Lee & Clutchy Hopkins (Ubiquity)
Cumbia Bichera (Tremor Rmx) - El Remolon (Pueblo Nuevo)
Kuff Cumbia - Sabo & Casady (Bersa Discos)
Soundboy Cumbia - Sabo (Bersa Discos)
So Krispy (Kinky Electric Noise Cumbia Nativo Rmx) - Kinfolk Kiashine
Gotta Be Fresh (GRC Electro Cumbia Rmx) - Kidkanevil (First Word)
Sniper Sniper - A Cutty Ranks Tale (Markus Kienzl Rmx) - Talen (Mouthwatering Records)
Streetlife - Terry Lynn (Phree)
Wow (Modeselektor Rmx) - Siriusmo (Exploited)
O Dela - Kidid
Sweet - Unitone HiFi (incoming!)
Dub Appeal - Force Quit (Zungzeng)
Sometimes In Autumn (Shackleton Rmx) - Harmonia & Eno 76 (Gronland Records)
Aidy's Girl's A Computer - Darkstar (Hyperdub)
Purple Smoke - Black Chow (Hyperdub)
Megadrive Generation - Martyn (Hyperdub)
All Of This (James Duncan Remix) - The Naked And Famous (Round Trip Mars)
The Beach Era (Djef Rmx) - El Remolon (Pueblo Nuevo)
IK+ - Disrupt (Jahtari)
Bootie Beat - Shawn Lee & Clutchy Hopkins (Ubiquity)
Mascaram Setaba - Mulatu Astatke with Ethiopian Quintet (Strut)

I had hoped to have my 100th post excitement up by now but it has been a week of it, and then some. I can however reveal that, while it may end up being post 101 or 102, it will be worth the wait and it's an interview with his mightyness Mulata Astatke, the father of Ethiojazz. It's actually all transcribed and just needs a little bit of work to be ready for your consumption and hopefully enjoyment (well it blew me away, man is dealing in concepts, big fucking concepts!). All being well it's only Part 1, with another bash at talking to the man coming up, there were some very testing circumstances with this one but I actually ended up with more than I suspected at the time, and it's downright fascinating.
Hanyways, a mixed grill as ever tonight, good to have some quality hip hop to play that isn't from the same old faces or rapildy familiar more recent ones, and great to have the right atmos to chuck in a track from Scalper, his album is going to blow some circuits next year, expect to hear more.
Tonight I'm going to slang you a couple without too much palaveration.
First up from Argentina and the much stinkrinsed ZZK camp El Remolon. I copped on this free digi-EP of his on Sunday when I was theoretically working but was actually too tired from the magnificent RTM trifecta of live gigs last week, and a stupidly early start on whopping the whinging Welsh (respect to their players, Prattland & the rest deserve to lose for another 50 years... and just might). So tooling around the internets instead of writing up a frothing review of the ridonkulously wide-screen and supremely selected '5 Years Of Hyperdub' for a leading national magazine, I ended up at the Pueblo Nuevo site. Mainly dealing in Chilean electronic gear I have to confess I sniffed around, skipped all that, and headed straight for the digital cumbia goodness. This EP is a good couple of years old and a bit patchy but the gooduns are awful good.



Eero Johannes Pitkanen is a ferociously talented feller from Finland. His 'We Could Be Skweeroes' track is one of my favourites of this year, even though it came out in late '08. I foolishly slept on it, because I hadn't heard a single skwee track that had provoked much more than mild amusent. Well thank the JoeFish's say I, for it is that elongaterated squire of Kingsland who tipped me in Eero's direction, and what a nod that was. Can't believe I haven't written about this wondrous sinewave-waif from Helsinki before, but I will undoubtedly be addressing that in the Top 100 tracks of the year, which is imminent and a tad scary, frankly. His 'We Could Be Skweeroes' album for Planet Mu is a riot, and positively ivy-like in it's growability.... it has slowly enveloped me, from the title track in.
I thought I would be swooping on the Blue Daisy remix from this release on Civil Music, but that wasn't really crisping my bacon. This however was musical marination that landed right at my station. As ever it's 192 biz and a week only, don't be a bore - you know the score, there's links below crying out for a little mouse movement to initiate some action of the buying and supporting kind....
This is the Planet Mu heem and revel in it.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Hudson Mohawke Interview - Jock Shocking Beats


The business of phone interviews is fraught at the best of the times. It’s a disconnected affair, invariably at odd times when you’re not in work mode/or alarmingly just awake - and then there’s shitty lines and mobiles, interviewees wandering the noisy streets, total no shows and all the rest. For the second time in a month since my trusty, old school, cabled 70’s beige phone passed on, I’ve had to write notes rather than record, as the flimsy and frankly fecal, gleaming white modern phone I bought to replace it, has played up. Naturally it didn’t when I dutifully tested it hours earlier, nope, fine then, however… just before I’m about to hit record - on comes the mother of all earth hums. So if any of the local readers know where to get their hands on one of these
or even these
or something similar (ie not brand new) please hail me up, because not being able to get a decent recording from home base is causing some severe frustration.

It nearly did my nut in when talking Rowland S. Howard (Boys Next Door, Birthday Party, Crime & The City Solution and These Immortal Souls etc) a few weeks ago too, fortunately Mr Howard (who transported me to instant idiot teenage Birthday Party fanboy status, not an easy task on a curmudgeonly veteran!) is a slow speaker, suiting my hesitant note takery. Even more fortunately so was Ross Birchard, the Glaswegian from the Lucky Me camp, better known as Hudson Mohawke, who dropped his debut LP ‘Butter’ for Warp in the UK last week. Stress was then subsequently increased by watching the slim timeframe of 15 minutes erode, only to find out that he’d been in the shower, for the first few times I’d called his number, bang on schedule. Bah! Below is what I could accurately salvage from my decidedly shabby note taking, and getting that written up and remembered as soon as I put the phone down.

I see you’re going to Australia and not coming to NZ, that’s a bit rude isnt it?
“Well it would be, but actually I am coming to New Zealand, it’s just not confirmed yet. I’m coming to Wellington and maybe another city, maybe Auckland. I have been to Auckland before, but that was an odd one." (A private Serato party where there were apparently, rather embarrassingly one might suggest, major problems with the decks!)

You mentioned a lot to live up to with Warp, how do you feel you've done?
“I’m not checking in everyday to see how it’s going, but I think it’s doing alright, had some good reviews and that.”

I actually meant within yourself rather than sales, it is quite a legacy to become part of.
“Well as I always say in interviews when people ask me this question (uh oh) I don’t think it’s like any of the Warp artists sat back and said I’ve just made a classic album. You just try and do as good a job as you can, and so I wouldn’t say I’m totally happy with it but I wouldn’t say I’m unhappy either. But it is a big legacy, you’re right about that.”

What is it with the two and a half minute songs? I’m not being funny, but everyone making abstract/wonky/whatever you want to call it hip hop tempo instrumental gear, seems incapable of writing anything longer? (he can and occasionally does btw)
“(Laughs) Well I don’t think it’s the length of the songs... or not just the length of the songs, (laughs)! There is a lot of very similar sounding stuff around, and I don’t really see myself as part of that..... hopefully. I think you can do a lot, and say enough, in two and a half minutes. It doesn’t have to be five or six minutes to justify itself as a song. I don’t believe that. I get bored listening to long records that just loop, so I guess I just try and avoid that.

Which is fair enough if you can come up with svelte shock-outs like 'ZOo00OOm', 'Polkadot Blues' and 'Spotted', which all tell a full tale, and feel in fine physical fettle, without taking more than 180 seconds. Regrettably, as I was rambling on round these parts last week, there’s an awful lot of derivative drivel, that is merely aping the templates and palletes of the clutch of genuinely unique maneuverers and shakerators, like Mr Mohawke, his pal Rustie, Flying Lotus and a few others. I wonder if his background in the turntabilism game (a former Scottish DMC champ as a youthful DJ Itchy) has contributed to his musical short attention span and A.D.D. cut-up dynamics.
“Oh definitely yes. When you’re thinking in terms of 90 second sets or doing a whole routine in six minutes it definitely has influenced me, and that’s definitely also affected how I make my music.”


Another touchstone of what has rapidly become the Hudson Mohawke aesthetic, that has had the likes of Rihanna, Bloc Party’s Kele and Erykah Badu getting their people in touch with his for some deep-fried Scottish beat heat, is a definite ravey influence. Right down to the use of some sounds that otherwise might have been left in the dusty cupboard alongside Vicks vapourub, smiley faces, Altern-8 records and mobs of white boys with whistles.
“Well growing up there was always tapes of rave stuff, hardcore and jungle and I think that’s obviously rubbed off in the music that I make. But I agree a lot of it is in sounds and feels, rather than actually trying to make music that is influenced by that. That’s not really what I’m about.”

I find your music very animated, as if you can almost see the parts moving.
“Yeah that’s exactly it. When I’m writing it is almost as if I can see what I want the drums to do, not actually visually, but if I close my eyes. I definitely do have an image in my head of where everything should sit in a song. I try to do that, not to get sucked into staring at the computer screen for too long, because it’s not really conducive to creativity. I’ll sit in the dark listening with headphones on over and over again, to try and achieve the point of view of a listener, or I’ll take a pen and paper and write things down, just to get away from being stuck in front of the computer and having that affect how you make music. So animated is probably a good description.”

With Fruity Loops you’re using a relatively simple program that should help that process then?
“It does, definitely. Because if you don’t think of music as just being moving blocks of sound around, then it’s going to be a lot more interesting. I’m not really interested in trying to make records like anyone else but I am interested in making sounds that people might not have heard before.”

And just as it was getting good, and we were beginning to talk about the music in some depth, I had to halt the conversation and let the next interviewer have their shot. Damn your shower Mr Mohawke, don’t you know you can do a phone interview without being clean and pristine (and sounding like you’re still half way through your morning ablutions for the first couple of parries). I mean I never even reached the really big questions - like Rangers or Celtic? Whether he grew up reading Oor Wullie and The Broons? Or an in-depth discussion of the majesty of Scottish baking. etc etc. Where’s the justice?
As it goes I’ve been pleasantly and gently stunned by 'Butter' (I suspect that gentle is a word that wouldn't come up too often around HM's gear). It’s time and a place music for me, not something I want to stick on every day, but whenever I do, I repeatedly find new layers of complexity emerging, and am constantly struck by the fact that for all the noise and tricky editing, the Glaswegian geez has got a really strong melodic sensibility. I know he's got a bit of a prog thing going on in his listening habits, but I had been keen to find out how far he'd delved into Steve Reich/Philip Glass/John Adams kind of axis, as I can definitely detect similarities with some of his treatments, though of course his are tiny shards in relatively truncated pieces, the kind of things that ambient trio could work into an hour long piece, at the very least.
I look forward to seeing how his music develops, and there’s plenty to suggest that he’ll be still standing when the wonky-wagon has trundled out of focus to be replaced by whatever journalistic conceit (nueva cumbient…anyone? thought not) comes next.
'Butter' is spreaderizing in a store near you right now, or next week if you’re of the Southern Hemispherical persuasion, I don’t think I need to clarify that this is some gregariously grove-laden ghee. Hey come on, I got through the whole thing with nary a slightly past its sell-by date buttery reference, so I'm entitled to at least three at the end!

It’s on Warp so it’s incredibly easily accessible hence no buy link needed this time around
Up till next weekend Hudson Mohawke on Benji B’s show Some cracking gear on this.

You expect some music here right? Follow this link to XLR8R and a 192 of the stunning 'Rising 5' which has been terrorizing the b-Nets of late.

The Naked And Famous - All Of This ..brand new clip

As promised, and with as little pre-amble and prevarication as possible here is the brand new video from The Naked And Famous.
Once again Special Problems have gone above and beyond, not to mention below and several other places, to come up with this visual stunner. A large hug and a pat on the back to New Zealand On Air for yet again coming to the party and bringing the cake, and the cheddar.
Tell a friend, tell several, this is virgin video with viewing figures that are all curvalicious and stuffed full of zeroes right now (but not for long) because it only went up overnight. It will be appearing on the idiots lantern later this week, but I have to say it's looking pretty damn swivey in HD (highly recommended Mr Selassie). Later this week we'll have a post up to tell you how you can get your hands on this track, it's incredeeeble spambient remix by James Duncan, and the magic manic minute of Pace..hold thyself tightly.

The Naked And Famous - All Of This (Round Trip Mars 2009)

Oh and this is post #99 on StinkInc, it looks like the Hudson Mohawke interview will be taking the #100 spot, but we do have some specialness a-brewing for the year anniversary of this here blog which is less than a fortnight away..can i say woop? and woop! Indeed I can.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Stinky Grooves 03.11.09 including.... you can't be Siriusmo


Find A Way - Natijah (Peckings)
Have Some Mercy - Assassin
Done Wid War (09 Rmx) - Busy Signal
Yuh Love - Vybz Kartel (Dre Skull)
IMF - Terry Lynn (Phree Music/Last Gang)
Tougher Love - High Stakes Crew (High Stakes)
Herb Tree (Rmx) - Collie Buddz (Sony)
Sniper Sniper - A Cutty Ranks Tale (Markus Kienzl Rmx) - Talen (Mouthwatering Records)
Streetlife - Terry Lynn (Phree Music/Last Gang)
International Roots (LD Rmx) - Mungos HiFi ft Earl Sixteen (Dub Police)
The King Of Kong - LD (Dub Police)
Coffee & Tea - Marcus Visionary & Liondub ft Johnny Osbourne (Liondub)
Shanti Riddim - Gemmy (Planet Mu)
Aesaunic - Scuba (Hot Flush)
Codsall Juniors - Mark E (Endless Flight)
Night Hunter - Air (Virgin)
SR - Jonny Trunk (Trunk)
That's Right - Lord Newborn & The Magic Skulls (Ubiquity)
Horario De Verano - Sonido Del Principe
Camina - Universildo (Hipi Duki Muzik)
Zorzal (Ft Sol De Oliveira) - Chancha Via Circuito (ZZK)
Do Ya Think Im Cumbia - Juan Pna (DJ Vampiros)
Mini Cumbia On LSD - Black Mandingo
I Know - BEAK> (Invada)
Busy Busy - Jonny Trunk (Trunk)
All Of This (James Duncan Rmx) - The Naked And Famous (Round Trip Mars)
Terms & Conditions - Mordant Music (Mordant)
Nights Off - Siriusmo (Monkey Town)
Wunderbar - Reichmann (Bureau B)
O O I A H - OOIOO (Thrill Jockey)
Pace - The Naked And Famous (Round Trip Mars)
Bikinis Y Rock - Chico Sonido (Kin Kon)
En Mis Suenos - Chico Sonido (Kin Kon)
Danza Danza - Fantasma (Soot)
Major Heavy - Shafiq Husayn ft Sonny Coates & Count Bass D (Plug Research)
(I Know A Girl Called) Jonny - Rowland S. Howard (Passport)
Chapter 2 - Shawn Lee & Clutchy Hopkins (Ubiquity)
Algerain Rock - ?/Dom Thomas (Finders Keepers)
Asiyo Belema ft Frank Holder - Mulatu Astatke (Strut)
Girl From Addis Ababa - Mulatu Astatke ft Ethiopian Quintet (Strut)
Amber Eyes - Lloyd Miller (Jazzman)
Count Ossie Warika Hill Hero - Calvin Bubbles Cameron (Uhuru Jamaica)
Lambs Bread - Calvin Bubbles Cameron (Uhuru Jamaica)
Frenz - Matumbi (Extinguish)

The Shaolin monks and the Wu have their 36 Chambers, and I reckon I've got at least a good 10 Chambers of Stench to go through to set myself up for having a decent chance of broadcasterating a half decent show on the regular. Tonight pre-show I was up to about Chamber 7, which is amassing the freshness in Traktor (and wherever else it might be) before getting my head round it, flinging in at least a couple of hours of extra listening, adding and pruning the mini-Mt Cook of possibles, potentials and really, really should plays. Then I maybe head up the road with not so much a plan, as a few vague possible routes, that I'll probably ignore as the show falls together or disintegrates, both of which (like a rammed dancefloor or an empty one) are alright in my book.
I really respect those DJs who have a show planned to a meticulous level (Duncan Campbell was the ultimate professional like that, and it showed) and we did do that a lot more with Tranquillity Bass and things like the Thursday 'Bass' Special, but with the reality that I might be hearing and downloading a tune at 8pm on a Tuesday night... and it just might be an utter killer, plus the insane access to music through blogs and the Juno's and Boomkats of the DL world, means that SG is always on the fly, and sly and potentially in the sty.
So what that little late night dribble was intending to say was tonight was an ad hoc shock, a bunch of stuff that I really wanted to play (the first Chamber is all listening from round about now till the next Tuesday thinking...must play that/ remember that one etc etc) didn't end up dropping, and a number of tunes that are going to be ending up in my year's 100 selection poked their head up again for another stenchworthy serving.
One such animal is the little gem below from Siriusmo 'Nights Off'. This is the first release on Modeselektor's new label Monkeytown and anything them Berlin electronic emperors have a hand in is worth a shufty in my book. I'm feeling a fair, unmistakable dose of the Modeselektor flavour in this track, or is there possibly a little factory down some cobbled strasse bunging out a bunch of like-minded, synth centered, decidedly-on musicians with a shared bent?
I've got with a few Siriusmo tracks here and there before, but it's all been a bit hit and miss for me. Likewise on this EP, I'm not sure if I'm down with the 3 little piggies fairytale angle, but this track and the Jean Jacques Perrey sampling (have used a slice of the same intro myself, but not nearly as cleverly) 'High Together' are absolutely stone cold blinding. Dunno what it is, but him and his Modeselektor mates have definitely got access to it.
Investigate, percolate and then make your pennies proliferate in the Monkeytown direction.


Had hoped to be also posting the new video for 'All Of This' from The Naked And Famous tonight but da youtubes and vimeos are getting their turtle on in the upload stakes as I type, and my original cunning plan to have 'em up this evening was over ambitious.
So tomorrow then... Also on the way in the next couple of days is an interview with Hudson Mohawke I did last night, just for the blog. Nice and decent feller, had a couple of interesting things to say, but it was very short unfortunately. Got some more interview action on the way, a couple of which I'm excess excited about.... don't want to jinx by saying though.
righto, as you were..